Longtime 'Correctional Giant' in St. Charles Dies at 84

Article excerpt

Byline: James Fuller jfuller@dailyherald.com

Samuel Sublett Jr. was the 35-year-old leader of the then Illinois Training School for Boys at St. Charles when a head count revealed two escapees. Sublett tracked them to a nearby farm. But when he reached the top of a ladder to search for the boys in a hayloft, Sublett found a shotgun pointed at his face.

Sublett merely had to ask for the weapon, and the boys relinquished it. So went the story of Subletts early days in the world of corrections, according to a May 1966 article in Ebony magazine.

Sublett recently died in his St. Charles home at 84.

The Ebony article portrays him as part teacher, part parent and part disciplinarian to the boys at the St. Charles juvenile corrections facility, which still exists today.

"Most of these kids are basically no different from those out on the street," Sublett is quoted in the Ebony article. "They get into trouble, theres no one to go to bat for them, and they wind up here."

Sublett went on to spend more than 40 years in the world of corrections, literally writing the book on national standards for both adult and juvenile correctional institutions along the way. …